- Patriots reach .500 record after a 2-5 start.
- Patriots score on two special teams plays – a punt returned for a TD and a blocked field goal returned for a TD. It marked the third time the Patriots had two special teams scores under Bill Belichick.
- Cam Newton becomes the only NFL quarterback with double-digit rushing touchdowns in three different seasons.
- Newton sets NFL record for most multiple-TD games in a season by a QB with four in 2020.
- Gunner Olszewski scores first NFL touchdown on a 70-yard punt return.
- Olszewski adds his first offensive touchdown on a career-long 38-yard reception.
- J.C. Jackson has 7th pick and 9th turnover in 2020.
PATRIOTS REACH .500 RECORD
The Patriots reached a .500 record at 6-6 after a 2-5 start with the 45-0 win over the Chargers. The Patriots lead the NFL with 19 straight seasons of at least a .500 record (2001-19), which is the second-longest in NFL history to the 21 straight seasons of at least a .500 record by Dallas (1965-1985).
THE PATRIOTS SCORED TWO SPECIAL TEAMS TOUCHDOWNS – THIRD TIME THAT HAS HAPPENED UNDER BILL BELICHICK; FIFTH TIME OVERALL
The Patriots scored two touchdowns on special teams. WR Gunner Olszewski scored on a 70-yard punt returned for a touchdown and then DB Cody Davis blocked a field goal that was returned 44 yards for a touchdown by S Devin McCourty. Both of those plays were in the second quarter. It is the third game under Bill Belichick that the Patriots have scored two times on special teams. The Patriots scored two touchdowns on special teams with a 95-yard kickoff return by WR Cordarrelle Patterson in the second quarter and a 29-yard return of a blocked punt by LB Kyle Van Noy in the third at Chicago on Oct. 21, 2018. On Oct. 4, 2010, at Miami, WR Brandon Tate returned a kickoff 103 yards for a score and CB Kyle Arrington returned a blocked field goal 35 yards for a touchdown. It is the fifth time since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger that the Patriots have had two special teams touchdowns in one game – Nov. 18, 1979, vs. Baltimore and Nov. 23, 1980, vs. Baltimore were the others. It is the second time that the Patriots have scored two special teams touchdowns in one quarter. The Patriots scored two special teams touchdowns in the fourth quarter vs. Baltimore on Nov. 23, 1980.
PATRIOTS ARE THE SIXTH TEAM IN NFL HISTORY WITH BOTH A PUNT RETURN TD AND A BLOCKED FIELD GOAL RETURNED FOR A TD IN THE SAME GAME
The Patriots are the sixth team in NFL history with both a punt return for a touchdown and a blocked field goal returned for a touchdown in the same game and the first since Baltimore in Week 12 of the 2015 season.
PATRIOTS RETURNED BLOCKED FIELD GOAL FOR A TOUCHDOWN
Devin McCourty returned a blocked field goal 44 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter. It is the first blocked field goal returned for a touchdown for the Patriots since DB Kyle Arrington returned a blocked field goal 62 yards for a touchdown vs. Miami on Dec. 14, 2014.
PATRIOTS NOW HAVE 11 NON-OFFENSIVE TOUCHDOWNS SINCE THE START OF 2019
The Patriots now have four non-offensive touchdowns in 2020. The 2020 Patriots recovered one fumble for a touchdown, returned an interception for a touchdown, returned a blocked field goal and returned a punt for a touchdown. The Patriots 11 non-offensive touchdowns since the start of the 2019 season are the most in the NFL during that time. Baltimore is second with 10 non-offensive touchdowns over that span. Last season, the Patriots had seven non-offensive touchdowns. They returned two fumbles, two blocked punts, and three interceptions for touchdowns. The Patriots' record for most non-offensive touchdowns in a season is nine in 2010 and 1961.
PATRIOTS EARN 29TH SHUTOUT IN TEAM HISTORY, 12TH UNDER BELICHICK
The Patriots earned their 29th shutout in franchise history and 12th under Bill Belichick with the 45-0 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. It is the Patriots' first shutout since a 33-0 win at the New York Jets on Oct. 21, 2019.
BELICHICK MOVES PAST TOM LANDRY FOR THIRD-MOST GAMES COACHED
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick coached in his 455th NFL game against the Chargers to move past Tom Landry for the third-most games coached in NFL history, behind the 526 games coached by Don Shula and the 506 games by George Halas.
MOST GAMES AS A HEAD COACH IN NFL HISTORY
Head Coach Games
Don Shula 526 (490 regular season games and 36 playoff games)
George Halas 506 (497 regular season games and 9 playoff games)
Bill Belichick 455 (412 regular season games and 43 playoff games)
Tom Landry 454 (418 regular season games and 36 playoff games)
BELICHICK REGISTERS FOURTH WIN OF 45 OR MORE POINTS AS A HEAD COACH
Belichick led the Patriots to a 45-0 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. It is the fourth time as a head coach that his team has won by 45 or more points. That ties Tom Landry for the most such wins in the Super Bowl era.
FIRST NFL QUARTERBACK WITH THREE SEASONS WITH DOUBLE-DIGIT RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS
Cam Newton capped the Patriots' first offensive drive with a 1-yard touchdown run, his 10th rushing touchdown of the season. He added a 2-yard touchdown run in the second quarter for his 11th of the season. Newton is the only NFL quarterback with three seasons with double-digit rushing touchdowns in a season. He had an NFL-record of 14 in 2011, 10 in 2015 and now 11 in 2020. The Patriots record for most rushing touchdowns by a quarterback in a season is 12 by Steve Grogan in 1976.
MOST RUSHING TDS IN A SEASON BY A QUARTERBACK
Player Team Season Rushing Touchdowns
Cam Newton Carolina 2011 14
Steve Grogan Patriots 1976 12
Tobin Rote Green Bay 1956 11
Johnny Lujack Chicago 1950 11
Kordell Stewart Steelers 1997 11
Cam Newton Patriots 2020 11
Cam Newton Carolina 2015 10
Kyle Murray Arizona 2020 10
Billy Kilmer San Francisco 1961 10
Daunte Culpepper Minnesota 2002 10
NEWTON IS THE 11TH PATRIOTS PLAYER TO REACH AT LEAST 10 RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS
Newton became the 11th Patriots player to reach at least 10 rushing touchdowns.
PATRIOTS PLAYERS TO REACH 10 RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS
Player Rushing Touchdowns Season
LeGarrette Blount 18 2016
Curtis Martin 14 1996
Curtis Martin 14 1995
BenJarvus Green-Ellis 13 2010
Corey Dillon 13 2006
Steven Ridley 12 2012
Corey Dillon 12 2005
Corey Dillon 12 2004
Antowain Smith 12 2001
Steve Grogan 12 1976
Cam Newton 11 2020
BenJarvus Green-Ellis 11 2011
Horace Ivory 11 1978
Jim Nance 11 1966
Tony Collins 10 1983
NEWTON EXTENDS NFL RECORD FOR MOST RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS BY A QB
Newton extended his NFL record to 69 rushing touchdowns, the most by an NFL quarterback, after scoring two rushing touchdowns against the Chargers.
Most Rushing Touchdowns by an NFL Quarterback
Player Rushing Touchdowns
Cam Newton 69
Steve Young 43
Jack Kemp 40
NEWTON SETS NFL RECORD FOR MOST MULTI-TD GAMES IN A SEASON BY QB
Newton scored multiple rushing touchdowns in a game for the fourth time in 2020, the most in a single season by an NFL quarterback.
MOST MULTI-TD RUSHING GAMES BY A QUARTERBACK IN A SINGLE SEASON
Player (Team) Multi-Rush TD Games Season
Cam Newton (NE) 4 2020
Johnny Lujack (CHI) 3 1950
Steve Grogan (NEP 3 1976
Steve McNair (TEN) 3 1997
Kordell Stewart (PIT) 3 1997
Cam Newton (CAR) 3 2011
NEWTON RUSHED FOR AT LEAST TWO TDS IN A GAME FOR THE 10th TIME IN HIS CAREER
Newton had his 10th game with at least two rushing touchdowns, the most in NFL history by an NFL quarterback.
Cam Newton 2-TD Rushing Games
Date Opponent Rushing TDs
12/04/11 at Tampa Bay 3
12/06/20 at LA Chargers 2
11/01/20 at N.Y. Jets 2
09/20/20 at Seattle 2
09/13/20 vs. Miami 2
09/23/18 vs. Cincinnati 2
01/03/16 vs. Tampa Bay 2
11/26/12 at Philadelphia 2
11/20/11 at Detroit 2
10/02/11 at Chicago 2
MOST MULTI-TD RUSHING GAMES BY A QUARTERBACK IN NFL HISTORY
Player Multi-Rush TD Games
Cam Newton 10
Otto Graham 7
Jack Kemp 7
Steve McNair 7
Steve Young 7
NEWTON EXTENDS ANOTHER NFL RECORD
Newton extended his NFL record with his 42nd career performance with both a rushing and passing touchdown. Steve Young (31), Aaron Rodgers (25) and Frank Tarkenton (24) are next in line.
GUNNER OLSZEWSKI SCORES FIRST NFL TOUCHDOWN ON A 70-YARD PUNT RETURN;
PATRIOTS FIRST PUNT RETURN FOR A TD SINCE 2014
WR Gunner Olszewski scored his first NFL touchdown on a 70-yard punt return in the second quarter. It is the first punt return for a touchdown for New England since WR Julian Edelman returned a punt 84 yards vs. Denver on Nov. 2, 2014. Olszewski's return comes on the heels of an 82-yard punt return for a touchdown that was reduced after a penalty to a 58-yard punt return in the win vs. Arizona on Nov. 29.
OLSZEWSKI IS THE FIRST PATRIOTS PLAYER WITH TWO 60-YARD PUNT RETURNS IN ONE GAME
Olszewski added a 61-yard punt return in the fourth quarter, in addition to his 70-yard touchdown return in the second quarter. He is the first player in Patriots history with two punt returns of at least 60 yards in a single game and the first NFL player to do so since Indianapolis RB Nyheim Hines had 84- and 71-yard punt returns for touchdowns vs. Carolina on Dec. 22, 2019.
OLSZEWSKI HAS SECOND MOST PUNT RETURN YARDS IN A GAME IN TEAM HISTORY
Olszewski finished with 145 punt return yards, the second-most ever by a Patriots player in a single game.
Most Punt Return Yards in a Game/Patriots
156 Mike Haynes vs. Buffalo, Nov. 7, 1976
145 Gunner Olszewski, at LA Chargers, Dec. 6, 2020
OLSZEWSKI RECORDS FIRST TOUCHDOWN RECEPTION
Olszewski scored his first touchdown reception on a career-long 38-yard pass from QB Jarrett Stidham in the fourth quarter. His previous best was a 29-yard reception vs. the NY Giants on Oct. 10, 2019.
DEVIN MCCOURTY SCORES SECOND TOUCHDOWN OF THE 2020 SEASON
S Devin McCourty returned a blocked field goal 44 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter. It is his second touchdown of the 2020 season. He returned an interception 43 yards for a touchdown at Seattle on Sept. 20.
DB CODY DAVIS RECORDS FIRST BLOCKED FIELD GOAL; SECOND BLOCKED KICK OF HIS CAREER
DB Cody Davis blocked Michael Badgley's 58-yard field goal attempt right before halftime and S Devin McCourty returned it 44 yards for a touchdown. It was Davis' first blocked field goal. He blocked an extra point vs. Houston on Nov. 3, 2019, while with Jacksonville. It also marked the second blocked kick of the 2020 season for the Patriots. DB Justin Bethel blocked an extra point vs. San Francisco on Oct. 25.
CHASE WINOVICH RECORDS FIRST CAREER INTERCEPTION
DL Chase Winovich recorded his first career interception when he picked off Chargers QB Justin Herbert in the third quarter.
DONTE MONCRIEF HAS FIRST RUSHING ATTEMPT SINCE 2016
WR Donte Moncrief converted a key third-and-four play with a 4-yard rush late in the second quarter to give the Patriots a first down at the Chargers 13-yard line. It was his 6th career rushing attempt and his first since Oct. 30, 2016, vs. Kansas City when he played for Indianapolis.
J.C. JACKSON EYEING TAKEAWAY RECORD UNDER BELICHICK
J.C. Jackson has recorded seven interceptions and recovered two fumbles for a total of nine takeaways in 2020. CB Asante Samuel (10 interceptions) has the team mark for most takeaways in a single season under head coach Bill Belichick. The all-time Patriots record is held by DB Ron Hall, who recorded 13 takeaways (11 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries) in a single season in 1964.
MOST TAKEWAYS IN A SEASON FOR A PATRIOTS PLAYER UNDER BILL BELICHICK
10 Asante Samuel in 2006 (10 interceptions)
9 JC Jackson in 2020 (7 interceptions and 2 fumble recoveries)
8 Kyle Arrington in 2011 (7 interceptions and 1 fumble recovery)
NICK FOLK EXTENDS STREAK
K Nick Folk extended his streak to 20 consecutive field goals with his 32-yard field goal in the fourth quarter. It is the second-longest streak of his career. He made 23 straight field goals in 2013 when he played for the New York Jets.
HARRIS IS AVERAGING OVER FIVE YARDS PER CARRY
RB Damien Harris is averaging 5.1-yards per carry (126 rushing attempts for 641 yards). Four Patriots players have finished a season with at least a 5.0-yard average (minimum 100 attempts).
HIGHEST AVERAGE RUSHING GAIN/SEASON (minimum 100 attempts)
Yards per Rush Player
5.59 Don Calhoun, 1976 (129-721)
5.45 Mosi Tatupu, 1983 (106-578)
5.05 LeGarrette Blount, 2013 (153-772)
5.04 Carl Garrett, 1969 (137-691
JAKE BAILEY'S PUNTING IS NOT ALLOWING RETURNS
Jake Bailey's punting in 2020 has allowed an NFL-low of 38 punt return yards. The Patriots record for fewest yards allowed on punt returns in a season is 75 in 2007.
ADRIAN PHILLIPS TIES A CAREER-HIGH WITH 12 TOTAL TACKLES
S Adrian Phillips tied a career high with 12 total tackles. He also had 12 tackles at Denver in 2018 and at New England in 2017 while he played for the Chargers. Phillips leads the 2020 Patriots with 82 total tackles, a new single-season high. His previous best was 77 total tackles in 2018 with the Chargers.
SONY MICHEL GETS FIRST CARRIES SINCE RETURNING TO ACTION
RB Sony Michel had his first rushing attempts since returning from injured reserve. He finished the game with 10 rushing attempts for 35 yards.
DALTON KEENE RETURNS TO ACTION
TE Dalton Keene returned to action after missing three games while on injured reserve.